April 17, 2020
St. Charles County remains under restrictions set by Gov. Mike Parson who, yesterday, announced the extension of the state’s ”Stay Home Missouri” order to May 3.
On March 23, St. Charles County Executive Steve Ehlmann issued an Executive Order requiring residents to remain within their residence or on the property surrounding their residence, except to engage in activities they deem necessary to their physical, mental or spiritual well-being, or for employment. Additionally, local retail stores and all other places of public accommodation are required to communicate social distancing requirements to customers. St. Charles County’s order is in place until a new order is issued.
In that order, Ehlmann did not order nonessential businesses to close, but entrusted citizens to identify essential places of business. While other jurisdictions decided what businesses were nonessential and ordered them to close, the latest Google Analytics Mobility Report based on cell phone usage shows that St. Charles County has had the same success rate as neighboring St. Louis County in curtailing trips to retail, recreational and workplace destinations. Both show a 50 percent decrease in retail and recreational activity and a 39 percent decrease in workplace activity. The baseline for the data is Feb. 29, 2020; the new data, released today, is through April 11.
“The state mandates on nonessential businesses, because they are stricter, supersede my order,” Ehlmann said today. “I am pleased the Governor announced yesterday that, upon expiration of the extension of his order on May 3, he will consider a loosening of the restrictions based on the infection rates at that time. In the meantime, we must follow his instructions to get those rates down.”
Ehlmann says he continues to work closely with the St. Charles County Department of Public Health as staff monitor the COVID-19 pandemic and determine how it is affecting the county daily. Looking at the number of infections per 10,000 people in each jurisdiction, the St. Charles County number is more than twice that of Franklin County, but less than half that of the City of St. Louis.